I don't have an ego... I'm just perfect
As I am writing this blog, I am currently sat in my office, after finishing a live call hosting a free 5 Day Self-Esteem Challenge. These are 5 days of considering reflections and actions with the primary aim of increasing self-esteem and boosting ego.
So far, it has been a great week with lots of interactions, and I’m not too surprised to report that the most repeated comment I have received by far, is how celebrating our strengths and qualities feels egotistical or arrogant.
As the word “ego” can be defined as “a person's sense of self-esteem or self-importance”, is having a big ego really such a bad thing?
This is a challenging question
There is a perfect example to demonstrate both the positive and negative effects of having a significant ego. Former president of the United States, Donald Trump, is well known for having a large ego. On the one hand, he did manage to become the president of arguably the most powerful nation in the world. On the other hand, he seemingly can’t get enough attention, praise, or adulation to ever be happy. Despite “having it all”, his ego has also caused him a lot of challenges.
And the answer? In short, it really depends on what’s important to you
There are many advantages to having a significant ego. For example, a big ego can lead to big success. If you aspire to be a politician, CEO, or succeed in any highly competitive field or sport this can be made more difficult without an ego. Big egos love to out-do the competition, which can be invaluable when the competition is fierce.
A big ego can also be extremely helpful when overcoming obstacles. Those with big egos are so often so confident in their own abilities, that they don’t allow silly obstacles to stand in their way. They think they can do anything, so why would an obstacle be a significant issue?
A big ego can allow you to set huge goals and believe that you can achieve them with no fear of failure. The high level of confidence that often accompanies a big ego can be a huge asset when striving for the life you want to live.
However, there are also disadvantages to having a big ego. For instance, some people with a large ego can often be overly concerned about the opinions of others and also suffer big pain when it’s not appreciated as much as it thinks it should be. It can lead to poor decision making by blinding you to the truth. How can you see the true reality of a situation, when your ego greatly influences your perception?
Another disadvantage is that of satisfaction. Some egos are never satisfied - a hungry beast that’s never full. Those with an insatiable ego, always want more, whether it’s power, money, attention, or praise, it can’t get enough. In these cases, those with big egos never experience peace, which can be detrimental to those around you. When you’re focused on yourself and satisfying your ego, others are just a means to an end.
The Beauty of Balance
So really, your ego can be a positive thing, or a negative thing, depending on your own circumstances, situation and how you are channelling the advantages of an increased ego.
An unchecked ego can make you sensitive to failure or overconfident in your abilities. It can drive you to be successful, but it can also harm those you care about the most.
It can influence your behaviour and your goals, can make you very successful, but it can also make you miserable.
In conclusion, it’s important to remember that like all qualities, there is always a middle ground.
A perfect balance of having enough of an ego to instil confidence in yourself and your abilities, but also be happy without needing to become the emperor of the universe. Find that level of confidence and ego that works for you.
So if you haven’t already, maybe it’s time to unleash that ego and see how your life can change?!